When the father of NBA prospect Lonzo Ball by the name of Lavar Ball surfaced, I really didn't pay him too much mind and didn't see what all the hate and derision was about. He was a black father who's been involved in his kids' lives (maybe a little too involved, but involved nonetheless) who was extremely proud of what his sons have accomplished (albeit, not much) and very confident in what his sons will accomplish in the future. No harm, no foul, right? I mean we live in an age where schmucks are famous and celebrated for nothing but being rich, so who's this guy really hurting?!
But, after a few weeks of watching Lavar Ball's behavior, and most recently the "release" of the prototype of his son's sneaker which came with a five hundred dollar price tag, I have to say- I'm really starting to hate this clown. When asked on a radio show to explain the steep price of the shoes, he only said "That's what I felt they are worth." I was expecting him to reveal that there was some sort of space age technology built into the shoe to help athletes perform better, or at least some powder cocaine tucked away in a zip pocket of the shoe to help you think you could run faster and jump higher...but nope, just a "I wanna rack up!" explanation. But, if you ain't "baller" enough to afford these unimpressive, don't-even-have-ankle-support, rip offs, you can buy a pair of the even more unimpressive Big Baller Brand flip flops for just $220!!! SMH.
Never mind the fact his son hasn't even been drafted into the NBA yet to play a single game and didn't even make it to the Final Four in the NCAA tournament, his middle son isn't even that good, & his youngest son is still in high school.... he's gonna charge over triple the amount of the shoes that carry the name of the best basketball player to ever step on the court, who actually has rings, and a solidified legacy!!!!!
This isn't about being a proud father. This is not about his sons and securing their future. This is about greed. This is about celebrity. And above all, this is about him. And it kind of always has been about him. From him going on various sports shows to promote his Big Baller Brand, to him claiming he would slay Micheal Jordan in a one-on-one game, to him claiming his sons are way better than the current crop of NBA all stars, to blaming UCLA's loss on the white players... its all about getting himself attention and in front of the cameras. He's even revealed that he's aiming to land himself his own reality show.
This clown is bad is for basketball, bad for his sons' potential careers, and bad for the public image of black fathers. Its great that his his sons are likely not going to become statistics to the streets, but when Lavar publicly makes statements that his sons will never be able to live up to, and scares away endorsements when companies don't want to invest with his Big Baller Brand, he's only doing damage that's going to be hard to get undone. He makes it seem as if black fathers are only involved in their kids' lives when they are top NBA prospects and potential cash cows. He also makes his sons targets for when they do get their careers going. At best, he comes off as a failed athlete himself who's reliving his glory days by vicariously living through his sons who are going to redeem the Ball family name. At worst, he comes off as a boisterous, ignorant, loud mouth, greedy Negro who's trying his best to pimp out his kids.
And right now, I just want him to go away. And take those ugly shoes with him.